Alibaba’s C2C e-commerce giant Taobao has been trying to put a stop to its reputation as a hotbed for China’s rampant counterfeit luxury goods market, but anyone who has seen the site’s massive array of fakes knows that it’s a daunting task.
A new Wall Street Journal video investigates the shady world of Taobao fakes and takes a look at some of the many knockoffs available for virtually all top global brands. According to the story, Taobao’s efforts haven’t made much difference in making fakes less readily available, but luxury brands shouldn’t be too worried about direct competition just yet. While prices are much cheaper for imitation goods, the quality is visibly different. For example, fake Tory Burch wallets ordered on the site smell like chemicals and feel like plastic, according to the segment.
What brands do need to watch out for, however, are “the best fakes,” which “have to be tested in a lab before you know whether they’re real or fake.” In these cases, consumers looking for real goods might not even know that they’re getting cheated.
The report states that brands that do encounter knockoffs of their goods are able to report the findings to Taobao, and have been “reasonably successful” in having them removed.